So... Blind bags. If you’re not aware of them as a commercial product, the whole idea is to sell a randomized assortment of toys or figurines at an inflated price, in order to stimulate the gambling centre of your brain and keep you buying. Naturally, of course, my spending $30 on blind bags was the logical choice!
I’ve seen these things reviewed on YouTube by a number of people, and I thought it’d be fun to buy some of these things myself and do a little write-up! I haven’t bought toys since I was 10 or 11, unless you wanna count Gundam models and Amiibers. The blind bag thing wasn’t really around when I was a kid in the late 90s... Outside of trading cards, you generally knew what you were getting.
In this series, I’ll be opening and reviewing the contents of several blindbags. And at the end, I’ll destroy all the things I don’t like in a grand finale episode! :D
1. Generic Surprise Bag ($1 - Cat Not Included)
These surprise bags have been around since I was a kid. It used to be common, at least in Ontario, to buy paper bags full of outdated hockey cards and near-expired candy at a deep discount at the local variety store - $1 might buy you what would otherwise cost $5. Dollar stores also sold them with an assortment of candy and low-quality toys. This surprise bag is... Not quite the same.
I mean, the concept is the same, but there’s really not much in terms of value here. That pink thing? It’s some horrible tiara made of glitter. It sheds glitter like Mega Man X7 sheds fans. It offends me. As for the candy? It’s mostly Tootsie Roll products. The Tootsie Roll stuff is good; always consistent quality. But the jelly beans? They just taste like raw sugar. Not at all pleasant.
Overall, I dunno, 5/10. Not worth the money by any stretch, but most of the candy was acceptable. Even the Rockets. And fuck that tiara thing.
2. Thomas & Friends Minis ($2)
I definitely watched this show as a kid, but I definitely remember my brother liking it way more than me. We had a few of the wooden toys, and I have fond memories for the stop motion (?) and stills of the original English TV show. There was something magical about it that cartoons didn’t quite match.
As for the toy... It’s very high quality! It’s supposed to be a Werewolf version of Edward, and for something so small, the paintjob is incredible. The plastic is quality plastic, very solid, doesn’t feel cheap or brittle... And surprisingly for something so cheap, the wheels move very freely. The piece of paper inside shows there’s around 12 different sets with different themes and spiffy paint jobs, so there’s a lot of variety.
Solid 9/10. The werewolf theme is a bit lame, but really, if you have a kid that’s into Thomas (or if you like it yourself), these are a very high-quality toy, and for $2, you absolutely cannot go wrong.
3. Marvel 500 Mini Figures ($3)
Full disclosure here, I’m not a fan of Marvel, nor comic books in general... I grew up in the 90's, and that whole “edgy” motif with characters like Spawn, Venom and Cable was totally my jam. Growing up, it seems that the comic book fandom seems to despise that sort of thing, and I can’t say that I like any active comic stories right now. They are total cheeseball nonsense where writers make up rules and stores as they go.
That said? This figure is shit. Look at it! Have you ever seen a product at such low quality for $3? Compare it to the Thomas toy, which was $1 less. Night and day. It has three small blotches of paint on the legs, face and beard. Otherwise, it’s just cheap, gold-colour plastic.
Who is it? Thor’s dad? Aquaman? I have no idea. According to the card inside, it’s “Marvel’s Odin”. So if you’re the kid whose #1 wish in this lifetime was a shit-quality facsimile of Thor’s Dad, you’re in luck.
1/10. Utter garbage. Possibly worse than the tiara.
4. Pokemon Cards! ($1.25 for a 3-pack)
Pokemon cards taught me the evils of gambling at a young age. You can spend and spend and spend and get absolutely nothing out of it. It was a total crapshoot on if you got a Pokemon you wanted in a pack. And holos? I swear to god, there’s like a 1% chance of getting one. Blech. But, all that said, I always loved these things for the great artwork.
And these are no different. Of these, the Ralts is my favourite. I REALLY like the artwork here, with a curious little Ralts investigating light in a dark space. It’s cute, and the art-work is very nice. The Golett one, I like a little less. I like the Golett line from a creature design standpoint, but the more manga look of this card is a little more par-for-the-course, which is just middling for me. The Eco Arm artwork, I don’t really like. 3D art in Pokemon cards always looks kinda shit - it’s all shiny plastic looking, and nothing really artistically interesting.
Overall, I dunno, 7/10. I really like that this $1.25 3-pack option exists now, because it’s a low enough amount that any kid can afford it. But when I was a kid, and packs were like $10, they were hard to justify in a low-income household.
Thor’s Dad and the tiara will meet a terrible fate. The other two things are great.
So how should I destroy the crap? Vote in my Strawpoll!